MOUNT VERNON – With four weeks left in the regular season, three KMAC teams and one OCC team find themselves in the playoff picture, according to this week’s OHSAA computer ratings.
There's still a lot of football left to be played, however. Here’s how things stand heading into Week 7:
Highland (5-1) dropped from sixth to eighth in Division IV Region 14 this week after beating Mount Gilead (0-6) last Friday, 58-0. Galion sits one spot out of the regional playoff picture in ninth, while Orange sits one spot ahead of Highland at seventh.
The Fighting Scots have not lost since Aug. 24, when they fell in their season opener to Bloom Carroll (5-1), 44-22. Since then, they've won five straight games by an average of 35 points per contest.
The Scots may drop further in the ratings over the next two weeks, even with wins, as they will face Fredericktown (1-5) and Cardington-Lincoln (0-6) consecutively. However, they will have a chance to gain that ground back in weeks 9 and 10, when they host East Knox (6-0) and Northmor (6-0), respectively.
Northmor (6-0) rose from fourth to second in Division VI Region 23 this week after taking care of Cardington-Lincoln (0-6) last Friday, 46-20. The Golden Knights are currently two points behind Paint Valley (6-0) for first place in the region. Southeastern (5-1) and Grandview Heights (5-1) are both rated third and fourth in the region, respectively.
The Golden Knights have won by an average of 23 points per game this season. They will face markedly better competition over the next four weeks, when they play East Knox (6-0) in Week 7, Centerburg (3-3) in Week 9 and Highland (5-1) in Week 10. Their performance in those games will determine whether or not they make the playoffs for the second straight year.
East Knox (6-0) stayed at eighth in this week’s Division VI Region 23 ratings after defeating Centerburg last Friday, 42-7. The Bulldogs sit fractions of a point ahead of Fairbanks, rated ninth, and over a point behind Adena, rated seventh.
The Bulldogs have won by an average of 46 points per game this season, although their competition will get stiffer over the final month of play, when they face Northmor (6-0) in Week 7 and Highland (5-1) in Week 9. Much like Northmor and Highland, their performance in those two games will likely determine their playoff fate.
The rest of the KMAC: The conference’s remaining five teams landed outside the playoff picture in this week’s computer ratings. Centerburg (3-3), which was rated eighth in Division VI Region 23 in Week 4, has slipped to 16th in the region after losing two straight – to Highland by 30 and East Knox by 35. Danville (1-5) is rated 18th in Division VII Region 27 this week after beating Fredericktown by 17 last Friday; meanwhile, Fredericktown (1-5) is now 22nd in Division V Region 19 with the loss. The KMAC’s two winless teams, Cardington Lincoln (0-6) and Mount Gilead (0-6), are rated 24th in Division VII Region 27 and 25th in Division VI Region 23, respectively.
In the OCC… Only one Ohio Cardinal Conference team was granted playoff status in this week’s computer ratings. Ashland (5-1) fell from seventh to eighth in Division II Region 7 after beating Madison (1-5) last Friday, 49-0. West Holmes (5-1) dropped out of the playoff picture, from fifth to 11th in Division III Region 9, after stumbling at Wooster last week. Wooster (4-2), meanwhile, jumped to 11th in Division II Region 7 with the 47-20 win. The Generals, who began the season 1-2, are now just fractions of a point away from playoff contention with four weeks left to play. Mansfield Senior (2-4) is 12th in Division III Region 10, while Lexington (2-4) is right behind the Tygers at 13th. Madison (1-5) is 19th in Division III Region 10, while Mount Vernon (2-4) is 21st in Division II Region 7.
The OHSAA will publish computer ratings each week until October 28, following Week 10, when the playoff field is announced. The top eight teams in each region will make the playoffs.